Dear Parents, Guardians and Students:
It is hard to believe that we are already past the halfway point of the summer! I sincerely hope that this finds you all enjoying a happy and healthy summer break. The Ocean City Intermediate School, also known as OCIS, has been an active place as we prepare for the upcoming school year. Our entire staff looks forward to welcoming all of our students to the 2016-2017 school year. I am excited to meet or reacquaint myself with all of you on our first day of school. The first day for students is Tuesday, September 6th and the day is a full day (dismissal at 2:20).
Here at OCIS, our school doors open by 7:35 am. and homeroom will begin promptly at 7:45 am. Breakfast will be available from 7:20 (if students wish to arrive early for breakfast) to 7:45 am. If students are driven to school, drop off is at the entrance gate on Haven Avenue from 7:30 to 7:40 am. Please note that no students are to be dropped off in front of the school between 7:30 and 7:45 am. If students are dropped off after 7:45, they must be dropped off at the front door as the back gate will be locked. Bus riders please follow the schedule that will be provided to you in a future mailing. Please note our new bus company is Sheppard Bus. Only buses may be in front of the school/in the bus loop at the start of the day (7:30 to 7:45 am). On the first day of school all students should go directly to their assigned homerooms.
In this mailing you will find important information that will help our students start the school year smoothly. Enclosed please find the following: the District Calendar, our Dismissal Plan and sign-off sheet, FERPA information, Media Consent form, Internet User Contract, Accident Insurance information, Food Service information letter and PTA volunteer/membership forms. Student schedules will arrive in a separate mailing during the third week of August. Please review everything as a family before the first day of school, return appropriate documents, and call us if there is something more that you need or with any questions that you might have. Additionally, please make sure that you have returned the documents that were mailed to you by the district prior to the deadline (Free and Reduced Lunch forms, School Health Service form and Demographic information). It is extremely important that these documents are reviewed and returned (a self-addressed stamped envelope was provided).
Our homeroom teachers will review their grade level’s daily schedule on the first day of school. Each grade level has its own schedule. It is very important that students bring their own personal schedule on the first few days. Grade level supply lists are posted on our website as suggestions…there is no need to bring these items to school until they are requested by the teacher(s).
An initiative that we have stressed the past few years has been to improve our attendance rate. Thanks to you all…we have!! We will continue to work on student attendance. Parents, guardians, and families are essential partners in promoting good school attendance. Missed days can add up to academic problems. While some absences may be unavoidable, especially those due to illness, it is essential to work with us to get children to school as often as possible. If there are obstacles to good attendance, please let us know so that we can work together. It is also extremely important for you to know that even though a call is made to school to inform us of an absence (the absentee hotline is 399-5322), all absences count and ultimately are not excused in the permanent state data base (with the exception of religious holidays). Absences affect grades, scheduling, test scores, promotion, and ultimately future educational experiences and careers. All absences count…and add up. Please try to schedule family vacations, as much as possible, during our calendar breaks.
We realize that there is a lot of information for you to remember. The OCIS website and district website are great resources for information. Our website features a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) section. The staff and I will be around to help students throughout the first days (and all days!). Please feel free to ask any staff member if you have questions about our school. Students will receive an Agenda Book/Handbook on the first day of school. This vital tool contains more details about information to make your days at OCIS so much more successful, includes a “planner” section to assist students in keeping track of their assignments and contains the newly Board of Education approved Code of Student Conduct. You will need to sign off on the sheet that accompanies the Agenda Book to acknowledge that you have received it and read the important information.
Lastly, we look forward to parental involvement this upcoming school year. We hope to see all of our families involved in one way or another. Information about becoming involved can be found on our website and/or obtained at our Back To School Night, which is Thursday, September 29th. We encourage all of our families to join and participate in our wonderful PTA.
Please enjoy the remainder of your summer days. We will see all of our students on Tuesday, September 6th.
Geoffrey D. Haines, Principal